Black History Clips
Free Black History Interviews
African-Americans have played an important role throughout America's history. The first blacks arrived during the 1600's. For the next two centuries, it is estimated that 645,000 slaves were bought and sold, before and after the founding of the United States. The number of Africans living in America grew to millions, many being held in slavery, particularly in the agrarian South.
By the end of the American Civil War, blacks were finally emancipated after centuries of servitude, to enjoy a brief period of freedom. It wasn't destined to last long, however. With doctrines and laws, such as the "Jim Crow laws" and the "Separate but equal" doctrine, Blacks had limited rights and little could be done to change it. African-Americans were, for the most part, unable to vote because of intimidation and the inability to pass the literacy test, rendering them unable to participate in politics. Segregation of schools, buses, libraries, other public places, as well as restaurants and stores, kept the races apart. It even extended to the military.
After the Civil War, black regiments were reorganized, and the soldiers earned the nickname "Buffalo Soldiers." These regiments saw much action in the Indian Wars, Spanish-American War, Philippine-American War, and the Mexican Expedition. During World War I, racial discrimination and segregation was still too prevalent to allow the Buffalo Soldiers to participate in the American Expeditionary Forces, although some regiments were able to fight in France. By the time World War II began, Buffalo Soldiers were allowed to join the war, but they were normally segregated from the whites. Despite these obstacles, they demonstrated great skill, as is evident in the famous Tuskegee Airmen.
In America, the situation did not improve. The Civil Rights Movement grew, as more and more African-Americans decided that they would fight for the rights to live a normal life. Boycotts, marches, peaceful protests, and sit-ins were only some of the tactics used by many activists including celebrated heroes like Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and Rosa Parks. Laws were slow to change, as were the people who did not approve. The controversy often became violent. But finally, the Civil Rights Act of 1964 banned discrimination and guaranteed the rights of all, regardless of race. With the restoration of rights, de-segregation followed, finally achieving equality for all citizens.
The Korean War saw some of the last segregated regiments, as the Buffalo Soldiers began to fight in integrated units. The last of the segregated divisions were finally disbanded near the end of the Korean War. At last, all Americans could fight united, regardless of race.
Historical Truth 101 hopes to preserve these inspiring stories for future generations. Upcoming plans include black family histories and war veteran interviews, which will be used to record their history and heritage. We invite you to come and learn more about these brave men and woman who appeared at this critical chapter of history. People who persevered and fought on, despite the obstacles and barriers they faced, for the rights of their people and defense of their nation.
Click below to access the free interview.